SOUTH AFRICA – South African retailer Massmart, has built a new state-of-the-art Distribution Centre (DC) in Brackenfell, Cape Town, featuring an eye-catching curved and seamless roof, measuring over 60 000m2.

Under the roof, the DC is customized to suit Massmart’s needs with innovative modular mezzanine racking, allowing for easy expansion of picking areas to accommodate varying stock demand.

With a capacity of 53 000m2, this is the second largest DC in the Massmart group, and a significant upgrade from the previous Airport DC that had a capacity of 19,500 m2.

“This new facility is a key milestone in the journey we are on, to build a truly end-to-end supply chain that serves our stores and customers in the best possible way.

“I am proud of the smooth transition we were able to make by ending operations at our Airport DC and switching on operations at our new Brackengate site in a matter of days,” said Martin Halle, Massmart’s Group Supply Chain Vice-President.

Sustainability is a core priority in any Massmart facility and the Brackengate campus makes maximum use of natural light and energy saving LED lights with motion sensors.

Walmart has reported an 8% rise in sales for the 19-week period ended 9 May to US$2.22 billion

It also has a built-in retention pond for rainwater harvesting. The pond will also generate water from air, daily, using atmospheric water generators.

In addition to this, water-wise plants have been selected for the facility to further reduce water consumption.

Brackengate DC is the first of Massmart’s product-based distribution centres, which will see facilities distributing specific products to all Massmart trading banners from a single point.

Meanwhile, the retail chain owned by Walmart, has reported an 8% increase in sales for the 19-week period ended 9 May 2021, to R30.5 billion (US$2.22 billion).

Sales from South African stores amounted to R27.9 billion (US$2.03 billion), increasing by 10.1% on the prior year, with comparable store sales increasing by 10.7%.

Total sales from ex-South Africa stores amounted to R2.6 billion (US$190m), translating to a 10.1% decline in rand terms compared to same period last year, with comparable stores decreasing by 11.2%.

On a constant currency basis, sales from ex- South Africa stores were flat year-on-year.

Sales over the same period in 2020 were impacted by trading restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 level 5 lockdown becoming effective from 27 March 2020 until 30 April 2020, it said.

“Whilst the continued easing of Covid-19 related trading restrictions marked slightly better trading conditions for the 19-week period ended of 2021, sales were still impacted by a ban on liquor trading in January and over the Easter Weekend period.

“We estimate the impact of the restriction of liquor sales to be around R770 million (US$56.06m) when compared to same period in the prior year, mostly impacting our Makro and Cash & Carry businesses,” Massmart said.

Massmart’s total sales for the 52-weeks ended 27 December 2020, fell by 7.7% to R86.5 billion (US$5.8 billion), with a 7.5% fall in comparable store sales in line with expectations.

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